Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1

Started Jul 31, 2012 | Discussions
Adrian Harris
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Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
Jul 31, 2012

I have been considering a GH2 for over a year now....

As although I really do love my older G1 a lot, the shutter lag when taking a shot is really getting to me. (apparently this is mainly due to the 'live view' permanently open shutter, having to close - before it opens again to take the shot.)

I know the GH2 does focus faster, but the big question is ... does it suffer from the same problem, is there noticable shutter lag.

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2
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jalywol
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Re: Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
In reply to Adrian Harris, Aug 1, 2012

My GH2 is definitely faster than my prior G2, so I assume that it will be noticably faster than your G1 also.

However, that being said, each generation of M43s has faster focusing than the prior, and the GH3 is due to be announced in Sept. My suggestion would be to see what that camera offers in terms of ultimate speed, if you want to make sure you are satisfied with it.

(I have no complaints about the GH2 speed when it comes to focus or shutter lag, by the way, but if you want to get the most advanced in that department, you might want to see what the specs are of the GH3 when it is announced and how they compare to the GH2, before you buy either....)

-J

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s_grins
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Re: Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
In reply to Adrian Harris, Aug 1, 2012

I've gone from G1 to GH2 just couple months ago, so my memories are still vivid. GH2 is faster; I can't tell you exactly why (because of shutter lug, or another lug) but it is faster.

What is not: GH2 takes more time to write onto the card. I suggest the reason is that GH2 files are bigger (16 mpx vs. 12 mpx).

Also GH2 is faster when set into continues drive
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BBbuilder467
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Real time test?
In reply to Adrian Harris, Aug 1, 2012

Does someone want to try this for a test?

Hold the GH2 in front of a tv or monitor with an action movie playing. Then try to watch both the lcd and the tv/monitor. See if they match and if you can capture an image accurately.

With the G1, there is a noticeable delay from the tv/monitor to the lcd. I can get close to real time if I watch the tv and just press the shutter button, but if I use the EVF or lcd there is a noticeable delay in the image captured. It's like if I had an optical viewfinder, it would be much faster and more accurate. What's on the lcd is gone before I can capture it.

Burst seems to work the same way. It's always 1 or 2 frames off.

With the higher burst rate of the GH2, I'd think it should be faster, but maybe that has nothing to do with it shot by shot.

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jkrumm
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Re: Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
In reply to Adrian Harris, Aug 1, 2012

The shutter lag is minimal, near dslr if you just want to jam the shutter down, and of course no lag with pre- focusing.

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papillon_65
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Re: Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
In reply to Adrian Harris, Aug 1, 2012

I found the shutter lag on the GH2 to be an annoyance. It's very fast to focus but the lag spoiled it for me. Now I know this won't bother some people but it was an issue for me. It has quite a clunky shutter mechanism which I didn't care for. Ironically I still use the G1 as my back up camera and it doesn't seem to be much different from the GH2 IMHO. I did play with a colleagues G3 the other day and that seems to be much better than the GH2 in this respect, quite snappy in terms of shutter lag, very minimal. In your shoes I'd go for the G3 if this will be a problem to you.
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George Paulides
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Re: Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
In reply to papillon_65, Aug 1, 2012

The GH2 body is now selling for $699 in the US (not sure about the UK) so it represents excellent value. You can wait for the GH3 to be announced at Photokina in September but it will only be an "announcement". It will be months before it is available in store.

Since you already have a G1 it may not be an issue to wait - it depends on your situation.
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BBbuilder467
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Re: Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
In reply to papillon_65, Aug 1, 2012

@ Papillon. OK, you seem to get this.

It's not really a shutter lag, but a delay in capture. You just can't quite get what you see on the screen. And you can't really beat it. If I pan on a moving subject, then I can lead and get close, but on a leaf or flower in a breeze, I can't. It's like you're 2 frames behind in a burst.

Is that what you're saying? That the GH2 is not really any better than the G1 for that? If it's not a "lot" better, I'm perfectly content with the G1 for my purposes.

I'm glad you responded. I think you've answered my question.

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papillon_65
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Re: Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
In reply to BBbuilder467, Aug 1, 2012

BBbuilder467 wrote:

@ Papillon. OK, you seem to get this.

It's not really a shutter lag, but a delay in capture. You just can't quite get what you see on the screen. And you can't really beat it. If I pan on a moving subject, then I can lead and get close, but on a leaf or flower in a breeze, I can't. It's like you're 2 frames behind in a burst.

Is that what you're saying? That the GH2 is not really any better than the G1 for that? If it's not a "lot" better, I'm perfectly content with the G1 for my purposes.

I'm glad you responded. I think you've answered my question.

That's exactly what I'm saying, don't get me wrong, it's a great camera but it's not much different in this respect than the G1. Having owned both, believe it or not (ducks head) I actually prefer the G1! The LCD is better (for me) and the simplicity of the G1 makes it a pleasure to use. The grandad of them all still takes great pictures :).
Nope, getting back to the original question, the pregnant pause is still there.
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BBbuilder467
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Re: Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
In reply to papillon_65, Aug 1, 2012

Thanks a lot.

I just wanted to make sure we were describing the same thing. I'm perfectly content with the G1. I have 2. I think I just keep looking for excuses not to "upgrade".

That's just one more to add to my checklist.

Thanks again.

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papillon_65
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Re: Shutter Lag: GH2 v G1
In reply to BBbuilder467, Aug 1, 2012

BBbuilder467 wrote:

Thanks a lot.

I just wanted to make sure we were describing the same thing. I'm perfectly content with the G1. I have 2. I think I just keep looking for excuses not to "upgrade".

That's just one more to add to my checklist.

Thanks again.

Add the LCD to your list, the GH2 LCD was horrible, the G1 screen is better for checking critical sharpness. The GH2 screen has some kind coating which meant it wasn't very good for confirming sharpness in my experience.
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jkrumm
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I see no pause
In reply to papillon_65, Aug 1, 2012

Almost like I have a different camera than you describe. I just tested it around the house, looking through the viewfinder. Press-click, press-click, one smooth motion. But that's with the fast focusing 45 1.8. If I put the 20 1.7 on it things are slower.

To me what's clearly slow on the GH2 (compared to my E5) is the card write time. Faster cards help, but it's still slower.

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papillon_65
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Re: I see no pause
In reply to jkrumm, Aug 1, 2012

jkrumm wrote:

Almost like I have a different camera than you describe. I just tested it around the house, looking through the viewfinder. Press-click, press-click, one smooth motion. But that's with the fast focusing 45 1.8. If I put the 20 1.7 on it things are slower.

I can only call it as I saw it, there was definitely not the same response time that I got on my E-P3 and OMD, they perform much like DSLR's do, my GH2 was different.

To me what's clearly slow on the GH2 (compared to my E5) is the card write time. Faster cards help, but it's still slower.

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John Krumm
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jkrumm
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Re: I see no pause
In reply to jkrumm, Aug 1, 2012

I was just testing it again, and the annoying pause I do see is from the review time. Take a shot, and then you see the shot in the viewfinder for way to long before being able to compose another. But I turned the "auto-review" off and this is gone, so it's even more dslr-like. Very snappy, at least until you hit the buffer limit.

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tt321
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Re: I see no pause
In reply to jkrumm, Aug 1, 2012

You can effectively remove the auto review delay by pressing and shooting again quickly - at least with the G3.

Obviously turning this off altogether is a cleaner solution.

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jkrumm
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Re: I see no pause
In reply to tt321, Aug 1, 2012

Yes, but you are shooting blind if you are doing the "button mash" without pre-focusing. Turning the review off allows you to mash away and see what you are shooting.

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papillon_65
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Re: I see no pause
In reply to jkrumm, Aug 1, 2012

jkrumm wrote:

I was just testing it again, and the annoying pause I do see is from the review time. Take a shot, and then you see the shot in the viewfinder for way to long before being able to compose another. But I turned the "auto-review" off and this is gone, so it's even more dslr-like. Very snappy, at least until you hit the buffer limit.

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John Krumm
Juneau, AK

I never have review switched on with any of my cameras. I'm talking about the delay between acquiring focus and the shutter completing it's routine. It was definitely not DSLR like on mine. The OMD definitely is.
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Adrian Harris
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Could the differences be due to diff lenses?
In reply to Adrian Harris, Aug 1, 2012

Thanks everyone for responding.

It is intreresting to read that people are having different experiences - and I was wondering if some of this is due to different lenses being used to test the lag. I think I remember reading somewhere that certain lenses were meant to respond faster? (possibly due to the iris stopping down for the shot, but I am only guessing.)

I also read that the viewfinder refreshes twice as quick as the G1, so 'perceived' lag should be less.

I shall be pleased to read more peoples experiences - and possible to hear if the new Olympus OMD EM5 (or whatever its called) is any quicker.

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s_grins
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Re: Could the differences be due to diff lenses?
In reply to Adrian Harris, Aug 1, 2012

Your original post was about shutter lug. In order to get correct answer (to eliminate all other lugs), I've switched off "AF PRIORITY" in menu. It means that now you can trigger shutter without achieving focus (the way it works with MF lenses).

Shutter lug is non-exisit in compare with lug of my brain and my hand. Also there is no lug related to processing image into LCD/EVF. You need really dark room to see this kind of delay while panning camera, and my TV screen is not dark enough.

As I mentioned before, HG2 is slower than G1 only when writing to the card due to bigger file size. In all other respects GH2 more robust than G1
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papillon_65
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Re: Could the differences be due to diff lenses?
In reply to Adrian Harris, Aug 2, 2012

Adrian Harris wrote:

Thanks everyone for responding.

It is intreresting to read that people are having different experiences - and I was wondering if some of this is due to different lenses being used to test the lag. I think I remember reading somewhere that certain lenses were meant to respond faster? (possibly due to the iris stopping down for the shot, but I am only guessing.)

I also read that the viewfinder refreshes twice as quick as the G1, so 'perceived' lag should be less.

I shall be pleased to read more peoples experiences - and possible to hear if the new Olympus OMD EM5 (or whatever its called) is any quicker.

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Adrian, one other point to note is that in one of the firmware updates on the GH2 Panasonic added an extra option that enabled the shutter to fire instantaneously as the camera obtained focus, I think it removed the first curtain part of the equation. This makes the GH2 as fast as a DSLR. I think they did this because they were aware of the perceived shutter lag with some users. Either way it's a clue as to how the camera does operate. Also, as I've said, the OMD is much more fluid in this regard, it's just like using a DSLR. FWIW the Sony NEX 5n is also much more like this, as is the G3 (which surprised me as I was expecting the same as the GH2). The GH2 was the worst of the bunch in my experience. Ultimately I think the only way you can find out for yourself is to try one in a shop.
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